Definitions of a "good Massachusetts father" are as varied as there are goodfathers, but one thing everyone agrees with is that a good father is a responsible person. A father takes care of his children and keeps, to the best of his abilities, the world around his children in working order. Responsibility is the backbone of parenting, and in a society such as ours, where definitions of masculinity are entwined with notions of leadership and authority, a father is expected to leave no loose ends, nothing overlooked.
Given the amount of time, energy and money that is typically expended in a divorce, the last thing many people want to hear is that they need to add something else to their already full plates. Sadly though, those in the midst of a divorce would be well served to spend some time thinking through changes that will need to be made to existing estate plans.
Let's start off by saying that not all guardianships and conservatorships are bad. Guardianships and Conservatorships play a vital role in Massachusetts by allowing caretakers the means to make financial (Conservator of the Property) and health (Guardian of the Person) related decisions for those who are not able to do so any more and have no one else to speak for them.
When one of the parties of a divorce decree in Massachusetts dies, custody usually reverts to the surviving parent. An exception to this is when one of the parent's rights to the children has been terminated. If this is the case, third-parties, such as grandparents, may be allowed to intervene.